Ten thousand police and National Guard are ready to be deployed to maintain calm across Baltimore after the Governor of Maryland vowed, ‘We are not going to have another night like last night.’ As the charred city tried to pick up the pieces from last night’s fiery looting and rioting following Freddie Gray’s emotive funeral, Governor Hogan announced he was moving his office from Annapolis to Baltimore to oversee the situation and has already put 500 troops on the streets. Already sporadic outbreaks of violence have broken out as protestors face off against police while volunteers attempt to clean up the damage that saw 150 vehicles set alight, 19 buildings burned and 235 arrests – including 34 juveniles. With parts of the city resembling a smoldering war zone, Hogan confirmed 5,000 law enforcement officers would strictly enforce the 10pm to 5am curfew with 5,000 National Guard on standby as local media report that looting in broad daylight is continuing. ‘It’s not going to happen again. We are not going to have another repeat of what happened last night,’ said a defiant Hogan. ‘We’ll be more prepared here,’ added Hogan. ‘We’ll have more people here from the police, from the Guard and from the fire departments around the state.’ The city, one of the largest on the East Coast, will effectively shut down tonight. Public schools were closed today and he Baltimore Orioles canceled their Tuesday night game at Camden Yards. National Guardsmen in helmets with face shields surrounded City Hall, standing behind bicycle-rack barriers. Last night’s unrest – which saw looters ransack stores, pharmacies and a shopping mall and clash with police in riot gear – was the most violent in the United States since Ferguson, Missouri, was torn by gunshots and arson late last year. The carnage wrought on the city left at least 20 officers hurt, including one critically.
Baltimore braced for another night of mayhem: 10,000 cops and National Guard ready to take the streets as sporadic clashes begin.
Smoldering Baltimore picks up the pieces: Hurried clean-up after night of rioting and looting left huge fires raging, 20 cops injured and 235 arrests as 10,000 National Guard and police take to streets
- Governor of Maryland has said the city has 5,000 police and up to 5,000 National Guard available to keep order
- Spoke as sporadic outbreaks of violence broke out between police and protestors for a second day running
- Already 500 National Guard have been deployed to the streets of the city and will protect ‘key assets’ tonight
- The mayor’s office says there were 150 + vehicle fires, 19 building fires and more than 235 arrests – including 34 juveniles – as a result of last night’s unrest
- Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is temporarily moving his office from the state capital, Annapolis, to Baltimore to deal with the situation
- Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake branded the rioters ‘thugs’ and issued a 10pm-5am curfew starting on Tuesday
- Governor Hogan told reporters that Blake took three hours to request the National Guard and said police had been ‘overwhelmed’
- The Baltimore Orioles game with the Chicago White Sox has been postponed
- Freddie Gray, 25, died after suffering severed spine in police custody on April 12. He died days later on April 19
Ten thousand police and National Guard are ready to be deployed to maintain calm across Baltimore after the Governor of Maryland vowed, ‘We are not going to have another night like last night.’
As the charred city tried to pick up the pieces from last night’s fiery looting and rioting following Freddie Gray’s emotive funeral, Governor Hogan announced he was moving his office from Annapolis to Baltimore to oversee the situation and has already put 500 troops on the streets.
Already sporadic outbreaks of violence have broken out as protestors face off against police while volunteers attempt to clean up the damage that saw 150 vehicles set alight, 19 buildings burned and 235 arrests – including 34 juveniles.
With parts of the city resembling a smoldering war zone, Hogan confirmed 5,000 law enforcement officers would strictly enforce the 10pm to 5am curfew with 5,000 National Guard on standby as local media report that looting in broad daylight is continuing.
‘It’s not going to happen again. We are not going to have another repeat of what happened last night,’ said a defiant Hogan.
‘We’ll be more prepared here,’ added Hogan. ‘We’ll have more people here from the police, from the Guard and from the fire departments around the state.’
The city, one of the largest on the East Coast, will effectively shut down tonight. Public schools were closed today and he Baltimore Orioles canceled their Tuesday night game at Camden Yards. National Guardsmen in helmets with face shields surrounded City Hall, standing behind bicycle-rack barriers.
Last night’s unrest – which saw looters ransack stores, pharmacies and a shopping mall and clash with police in riot gear – was the most violent in the United States since Ferguson, Missouri, was torn by gunshots and arson late last year.
The carnage wrought on the city left at least 20 officers hurt, including one critically as local gangs and high school students used social media to launch a coordinated ‘Purge’ – a slang term which comes from a film about rampaging lawlessness.
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Militarized: Members of the Maryland National Guard patrol the harbor section of Baltimore as the city began cleaning up the wreckage from rioting and fires that erupted after the funeral of a 25-year-old black man who died after suffering a spinal injury in police custody
Maryland National Guardsmen patrol near downtown businesses at the order of Maryland Governor, Larry Hogan
Protecting the streets: A National Guard vehicle drives by a Maryland State Trooper in the aftermath of the huge riots that broke out in Baltimore on Monday
Firefighters work to extinguish the smoldering remains of a senior center set ablaze during night riots in Baltimore that became so serious that the National Guard was deployed
Unprecedented move: The ruins of the senior center smolder as it was announced that Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is temporarily moving his office from the state capital, Annapolis, to Baltimore on Tuesday after rioting and fires broke out in the city. Hogan spokeswoman Erin Montgomery says the governor will visit sites around the city Tuesday morning and plans to work out of state offices in downtown Baltimore with Cabinet members and senior staffers
Destruction: This downtown 7-11 was left almost totally ransacked when a mob ran through it
Speaking in the Rose Garden during the visit of Japanese Prime Minister, President Obama said that the nation shouldn’t be shocked at the level of anger that has turned to violence in Baltimore.
Speaking on the tension in Baltimore, the president said, ‘This is not new and we shouldn’t pretend its new.’
‘We as a country have to do some soul searching. This is not new.’
Saying that the behavior of police in the arrest and death of Freddie Gray raises ‘troubling questions’, the president said he understand there were ‘legitimate concerns in Baltimore’.
However he categorically turned on the looters and rioters and said that legitimate anger is no reason to burn and loot.
‘No excuse for the kind of violence we saw yesterday,’ said the president.
‘There’s no excuse for the kind of violence that we saw yesterday. It is counterproductive,’ said Obama said at a press conference from the White House.
‘When individuals get crowbars and start prying open doors to loot, they’re not protesting. They’re not making a statement. They’re stealing. When they burn down a building, they’re committing arson.
‘And they’re destroying and undermining businesses and opportunities in their own communities. That robs jobs and opportunity from people in that area.’
The president also said he spoke with Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan on Monday.
He then expressed his sympathies for the 15 officers hurt in the riots last night.
‘My thoughts are with the police officers who were injured … underscores that it’s a tough job”
The president spoke about the need for policing and communities to come together to get ease racial tensions across the nation.
The president said if the US. is serious about solving the problem, the police need help, but also work on education and criminal justice reform.
He added that the nation needs to do a lot of soul searching on police issues and said that ‘we can’t just leave this to the police’ and that solving this problem, ‘Would require everybody.’
‘That was a really long answer. But I felt pretty strong about it.’
Back in Baltimore, Maj. Gen. Linda Singh, adjutant general of the Maryland National Guard, said up to 5,000 troops would be available for Baltimore’s streets.
‘We are going to be out in massive force, and that just means basically that we are going to be patrolling the streets and out to ensure that we are protecting property,’ Singh said at a news conference Monday night.
Singh said they will be acting at the direction of Baltimore police and this was not a military take over and not martial law.
This is the first time the National Guard has been called out to quell unrest in Baltimore since 1968, when some of the same neighborhoods burned after the assassination of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.
‘We’re not going to leave the city unprotected,’ Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan vowed during a visit in the morning to a West Baltimore intersection that on Monday was littered with burning cars, a smashed police vehicle and broken glass.
‘Too many people have spent generations building up this city for it to be destroyed by thugs who — in a very senseless way — are trying to tear down what so many have fought for,’ said Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake.
‘What happened … destroyed so much of the progress that the people who actually live here have been working for,’ said Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, and called Monday ‘a very dark day for our city.’
She later tweeted, ‘We will not let these deplorable and cowardly acts of violence ruin our city’. ‘I sincerely want to thank all those out there cleaning up streets and sharing their love for #OurCity. Thank you, Baltimore!,’
State and local authorities pledged to restore order and calm to Baltimore, but quickly found themselves responding to questions about whether their initial responses had been adequate.
Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake was asked why she waited hours to ask the governor to declare a state of emergency, while the governor himself hinted she should have come to him earlier.
‘We were all in the command center in the second floor of the State House in constant communication, and we were trying to get in touch with the mayor for quite some time,’ Gov. Larry Hogan told a Monday evening news conference. ‘She finally made that call, and we immediately took action.’
Asked if the mayor should have called for help sooner, however, Hogan replied that he didn’t want to question what Baltimore officials were doing: ‘They’re all under tremendous stress. We’re all on one team.’
‘The violence started at 3pm on Monday and we had prior plans in place,’ said Hogan.
‘We had activated our emergency command center and spoken to the National Guard and the White House
‘She (Blake) requested this at 6pm and we did so immediately because we had already mobilized
‘I don’t want to place any blame. Our response was incredible and we acted instantaneously.’
Rawlings-Blake said officials believed they had gotten the unrest that had erupted over the weekend under control ‘and I think it would have been inappropriate to bring in the National Guard when we had it under control.’
But later on, Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts made it clear events had become unmanageable. ‘They just outnumbered us and outflanked us,’ Batts said. ‘We needed to have more resources out there.’
Batts said authorities had had a ‘very trying and disappointing day.’
Police certainly had their work cut out for them: The rioters set police cars and buildings on fire in several neighborhoods, looted a mall and liquor stores and threw rocks at police with riot gear who responded occasionally with pepper spray.
‘I understand anger, but what we’re seeing isn’t anger,’ Rawlings-Blake said. ‘It’s disruption of a community. The same community they say they care about, they’re destroying. You can’t have it both ways.’
Indeed, residents rushed to clean up the city after the devastation of the night before.
Laquicha Harper, a 30-year-old Baltimore resident told CNN that she thought the destruction was embarrassing and ‘heartbreaking’.
‘I understand that everybody is upset, I understand that tension is brewing … I’m here, I get it,’ she said. ‘But there are better ways that we can handle our frustration. And they can’t hear us when we’re behaving this way.’
While fire engines could still be heard racing across the city, the National Guard began to file onto the streets of Baltimore, taking up positions around the city’s Western District and the inner harbor.
Flames: A storefront was set on fire around midnight at Baker Street in Baltimore. Firemen and police officers responded to control the situation on Monday night
National Guard spokesman Col. Charles Kohler says guard members are hooking up with police and providing additional security at critical infrastructure. Kohler declined say how many were arriving Tuesday, but says the guard can build to a force of 5,000
Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, a Republican, declared a state of emergency on Monday and the National Guard was arriving in the city
Some expressed sympathy with the display of anger some of the young people had expressed, saying they too are furious with the police.
‘I’m 38, but had I been 12, I probably would have been out there,’ said Katrina Carter to the New York Times.
However, she did say the rioters need to understand that violence is not the way to create justice.
Indeed, the Rev. Jamal Bryant who gave Freddie Gray’s eulogy added to the chorus of voice pleading with the rioters to think about what they are doing.
This is not what the family asked for, today of all days,’ said Mr. Bryant. ‘For us to come out of the burial and walk into this is absolutely inexcusable.’ He said he was ‘asking every young person to go back home,’ adding, ‘it’s frustration, anger and it’s disrespect for the family.
Gray’s death gave new energy to the public outcry over police treatment of African Americans that flared last year after police killings of unarmed black men in Ferguson, New York City and elsewhere.
But the violence appeared to catch city officials and community leaders somewhat off-guard after a week of mostly peaceful protests following Gray’s death on April 19.
Police van ablaze: Television images showed mobs of rioters jumping on top of a police car, destroying a taxi and setting two other patrol cars on fire after teenaged crowds ignored calls to disperse and clashed with lines of hundreds of police.
Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, a Republican, declared a state of emergency on Monday and the National Guard fanned out around the city. A one-week 10pm to 5am curfew was also imposed in the largely black city starting Tuesday night, with exceptions for work and medical emergencies.
Monday’s rioting was one of the most volatile outbreaks of violence prompted by a police-involved death since the days of protests that followed the death of Michael Brown, an unarmed black man who was shot and killed during a confrontation with a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, last summer.
Aerial footage Tuesday morning from Baltimore station WJZ-TV showed a firefighter spraying the burnt out shell of a large building as an American flag fluttered nearby on an untouched building.
Gov. Hogan was temporarily moving his office to Baltimore on Tuesday. A spokeswoman for the governor said Hogan would be visiting sites around the city and planned to work out of state offices in downtown Baltimore with cabinet members and senior staffers.
U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, in her first day on the job, said she would send Justice Department officials to the city in coming days. A weeklong, daily curfew was imposed beginning Tuesday from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m., the mayor said, and Baltimore public schools announced they would be closed Tuesday.
Demonstrators climb on a destroyed Baltimore Police car in the street near the corner of Pennsylvania and North avenues during violent protests following the funeral of Freddie Gray
The violence appeared to catch city officials and community leaders somewhat off-guard after a week of mostly peaceful protests following Gray’s death on April 19
A Baltimore firefighter attacks a fire at a convenience store and residence during clashes after the funeral of Freddie Gray in Baltimore
Police stand nearby as firefighters attack a fire in a convenience store and residence during clashes after the funeral of Freddie Gray
The Baltimore mayor’s office says there were 144 vehicle fires, 15 structures fires and nearly 200 arrests in the unrest that broke out in the city
Local television footage showed firefighters on the scene of one many fires that broke out overnight and residents sweeping up debris on city streets as dawn broke Tuesday in Baltimore
Devastating: This is the scene of a fire which burned down a $16 million nursing home that a Baptist church spent eight years building
Police and firefighters have been called to blazes across Baltimore after several buildings were set alight by protestors
Col. William Pallozzi, the superintendent of the state police, said a request for up to 500 additional law enforcement personnel in Maryland had been sent. Pallozzi added that the state is putting out a request for up to 5,000 more law enforcement personnel from around the mid-Atlantic region.
Maryland Congressman Elijah Cummings and about 200 others, including ministers, tried unsuccessfully to quell the violence at one point Monday night, marching arm-in-arm through a neighborhood littered with broken glass, flattened aluminum cans and other debris.
As they got close to a line of police officers, the marchers went down on their knees. They then rose to their feet and walked until they were face-to-face with the police officers in a tight formation and wearing riot gear.
Mayor Blake said on Twitter on Tuesday that she was beginning her day with a survey of the most damaged areas.
A $16 million nursing home built by a Baptist church, which was due to open in December after eight years of construction, was burned to rubble on the city’s east side as violence spread from the west of the city. Just two blocks away, a housing development was also ablaze.
Officials feared the fires were sparked to pull emergency services from the west side of the city, where rioters continued to loot gun stores, check cashing stores, liquor stores and supermarkets well into Tuesday morning. Balaclava-clad mobs were seen ripping the doors off one rifle shop and passing weapons to people on the streets.
When a CVS pharmacy was set ablaze, rioters slashed fire fighters’ hoses as they tried to battle the flames.
‘War zone’: A rioter wearing a gas mask punches his fist in the air as the streets fill with smoke while police attempt to restore order
Baltimore firefighters and police are the only ones exempt from the curfew as they try and control blazes erupting throughout the city
Fire fight: A Baltimore police cruiser burned after being set alight on Monday following the outbreak of riots in the troubled city
Smoke billows from a CVS Pharmacy store in Baltimore on Monday evening after looters raided the store and set it alight
Fires have raged at buildings throughout Baltimore after protests continued and intensified following Freddie Gray’s funeral
By nightfall, groups started moving toward more affluent areas near Camden Yards stadium, prompting Monday night’s White Sox v Orioles game to be suspended.
Just hours after Gray was laid to rest on Monday at a service attended by 2,500, including luminaries of the civil rights movement, hundreds of protestors started throwing rocks and stones at dozens of police in riot gear. It soon escalated into uncontrolled destruction.
According to a report by the Baltimore Sun, the unrest grew from a dispute between police officers and students earlier on Monday, when the teenagers started looting stores. Photographs and video during the day have captured scenes of officers throwing rocks, prompting many to accuse law enforcement of fueling the situation.
Families were forced to flee their homes in west Baltimore as it approached morning and nearby stores were being set alight. Video footage emerged of a shopkeeper was also seen being pulled from his store and beaten as the riots spread.
Read more: Daily Mail